Thirsty Thursday

A hankering for happy hour

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Date nights aside, my bearded man-friend and I have designated Thursday afternoons as our appointed weekly happy hour outing. We typically spend a few minutes discussing new venues we should be exploring, but then end up at Jalapeno’s sipping Big Mamas, sharing a plate of nachos and watching the waterfront from a perch in the bar.

Last Thursday was different. When I informed my fella I hoped he’d be willing to branch out as part of Downtown Bellingham Partnership’s “Happy Hour Thursdays” taking place throughout March, I came up against some resistance. He wanted his familiar plus-sized margarita, and suggested we wait another week before branching out.

“Does the fact that participating venues will each be offering $6 craft cocktails, $5 wines, $4 beers and half off select appetizers change your mind?” I countered. “Also, if we try somewhere we’ve never been before and don’t like it, we’re under no obligation to stick around.”

“Fine,” he grumbled, following me into Black Sheep. The self-proclaimed “bar with tacos” on Holly Street was filling up fast, but we snagged a table for two on the ground floor of the small space and proceeded to explore our options. My date ordered a $6 “mule” with Kuma—a locally produced liqueur made with turmeric root—and I opted for a $4 “Dude-a-Rita,” a margarita on the rocks made with Lunazul reposada tequila, triple sec, lime and lemon. Chips with a trio of salsas was $2 (typically $4).

“I’m enjoying the flavor sensations,” my reluctant date admitted soon thereafter, proclaiming his cocktail to be one of the best he’d had in a long while. He was similarly enthused by the spiced sweet corn salsa, and was moved to order a carne asada taco, which also featured the delicious topping. Since the tacos are two for $7, I jumped into the ring by requesting a lamb and brisket gyro taco—which comes in the same handmade tortillas as the “regular” tacos, but adds tomato jam, tzaziki, shaved fennel and feta to the mix (our waitress noted the roasted cauliflower gyro was her favorite, and I vowed to try that the next time we visited).

By the time our plates and glasses were empty, my date proclaimed himself to be “utterly transformed,” and said he was looking forward to exploring a few more of the Happy Hour Thursdays events this month.

When I told him about some of the other menu items I knew about—like the Rosemary Paloma at Bayou on Bay; Camber’s goat cheese fondue; select appetizers and the “Turn & Burn” cocktail at Hundred North; Rook & Rogue’s Lifesaver-infused vodkas; 1950s-inspired cocktails and classic pub food at the Horseshoe; as well as specials at the Grand, La Fiamma, the Local, Old World Deli, Casa, the Racket, the Orion, Miller’s Back Door, the Redlight, Uisce, Vinostrology and beyond—his eyes lit up.

“Where should we go next Thursday?” he queried. “It’s up to you,” I answered. “I’m up for anything.”

West Coast
More Food...
Building Blocks
Slurping into springtime

Spring has begun its tantalizingly slow reveal, but winter isn’t quite done with us yet. This means soup can shine for a few weeks longer before it’s time to think about salads.

At the final winter market last week, I found carrots, onion and celery root, which were all I need to make…

more »
Dublin Coddle
A taste of Ireland

I don’t harbor any ill will toward corned beef and cabbage, but with St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner, I was looking for a recipe that wasn’t focused on the tried-and-true duo.

The options abounded. Colcannon—basically mashed potatoes with plenty of greens like kale or cabbage…

more »
Barrels and Blending
Aslan Depot steps it up

Bellingham’s beer scene recently stepped it up another notch with the opening of Aslan Depot’s Barrels and Blending. A taproom, barrel-aging facility and event space, the Depot opened on the first day of February at State Street’s historic Union Depot building.

“We’re featuring a…

more »
Boynton Poetry Contest

8:00am|Whatcom County

Daffodil Festival

10:00am|La Conner and the Skagit Valley

World Water Day Beach Cleanup

12:00pm|Locust Beach

English Country Dancing

1:30pm|Bellingham Senior Activity Center

Toward Zero Waste Workshop

1:30pm|Kombucha Town's Culture Cafe

Happy Hour Thursdays

4:00pm|Downtown Bellingham

Trivia Thursday

5:30pm|Trove Coffee

Jazz Jam

5:30pm|Illuminati Brewing

Jazz Jam

5:30pm|Illuminati Brewing

Pub Run

6:00pm|BBay Running


6:00pm|Ciao Thyme Commons

South Fork Exploration

6:30pm|Van Zandt Community Hall

Balkan Folk Dancers

7:00pm|Fairhaven Library

Fitness Forum

7:00pm|Fairhaven Runners

Crown Jewel Wilderness

7:00pm|Village Books

Havilah Rand House Concert

7:30pm|Chuckanut Center

Village Books
Boynton Poetry Contest

8:00am|Whatcom County

Daffodil Festival

10:00am|La Conner and the Skagit Valley

Women's Conference Registration Deadline

9:00am|Bellwether Ballroom

Wild Things

9:30am|Whatcom Falls Park

Coffee Tasting

3:00pm|Camber Cafe

Food Not Bombs

4:00pm|Downtown Bellingham

Fourth Friday Art Walk

5:00pm|Historic Fairhaven

Bingo Night

6:00pm|The Majestic

From Auschwitz to America

7:00pm|Village Books

The Book of Moron

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Adventures and Brawls

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Village Books Cascadia Weekly Subscribe Ad 1
Daffodil Festival

10:00am|La Conner and the Skagit Valley

The Book of Moron

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Adventures and Brawls

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Pancake Breakfast

8:00am|American Legion Hall

NSEA Work Party

9:00am|Squalicum Creek Park

Native Plant Sale & Expo

9:00am|Whatcom Community College

Whatcom County Democrats Convention

10:00am|Bellingham High School

Rock & Gem Club Show

10:00am|Bloedel Donovan Community Center

Starting Your Vegetable Garden

10:00am|Blaine Library

March for Our Lives

10:00am|Bellingham City Hall

Walk for Water

10:00am|Fairhaven Village Green

Tax Help Available

12:30pm| First Congregational Church


1:00pm|Lincoln Theatre

Spring Show Opening Reception

2:00pm|River Gallery

Native Plants & Birds

2:00pm|Ferndale Library

A Conversation with Alan Friedlob

3:00pm|Deming Library

The Passage Home to Meuse

4:00pm|Lynden Village Books

Memory's Blade

7:00pm|Village Books

Contra Dance

7:00pm| Fairhaven Library

Shantala and Friends

7:00pm|Presence Studio

Ballroom Dance

7:30pm|Bellingham Senior Activity Center

see our complete calendar »

Best Of Skagit Village Books Trove Web Cascadia Weekly Subscribe Ad 1